Every year, the National Dog Show debuts the newest dog breeds they plan on adding to the already stiff canine competition. This year, two beautiful breeds — the Russell Terrier and the Treeing Walker Coonhound — made the cut and will be strutting their stuff in hopes of winning the coveted "Best in Show" title for 2012. Learn more about the new additions, find out what other breeds were added over the past few years and don't forget to watch the historical show on Thanksgiving Day!
Breed Name: Russell Terrier
Origin Story: The breed began in the 1800s when Reverend John Russell used strains from his fox working terrier to breed the working dog. Although it originated in England, it was developed in Australia.
Fun Fact: The Russell Terrier's strong voice and fearless nature make it an excellent specimen to work vermin below ground.
Breed Name: Treeing Walker Coonhound
Origin Story: The energetic breed of coonhound was developed from the Walker Foxhound, which descended from English Foxhounds.
Fun Fact: It is known as the "people's choice" of coonhound breeds, due to its ability to track and tree wild raccoons with expertise.
Breed: Cesky Terrier
Origin Story: In 1949, Mr. Frantisik Horak completed the first breeding between a Scottish Terrier and Sealyham Terrier, which resulted in the Cesky Terrier.
Fun Fact: The Cesky Terrier remains rather rare in most parts of the word, including its native Czechoslovakia.
Breed: American English Coonhound
Origin Story: When the descendants of the English Foxhound were bred to adapt to rougher terrain, the American English Coonhound evolved.
Fun Fact: The American English Coonhound is an incredible athlete, thanks to all that intense hunting!
Origin Story: According to archaeologists, Xolos accompanied men on their first migrations across the Bering Straits. Their name, however, is derived from the Aztec Indian god Xolotl and Itzcuintli (the Aztec word for "dog").
Fun Facts: Also known as the Mexican Hairless, the Xolo is considered one of the oldest breeds in North America.
Origin Story: The Leonberger breed began in Leonberg, Germany in the 1800s. They were family, farm and draft dogs. They were almost extinct after World War I, but two men kept the breed alive.
Fun Fact: Leonbergers were bred specially to resemble the lion depicted on the town's crest.
Breed: Bluetick Coonhound
Origin Story: This beautiful dog descended from the Grand Bleu de Gascogne and the English Foxhound. Until 1945, Bluetick Coonhounds were referred to as English Coonhounds.
Fun Fact: These dogs need a job to stay happy. Their owners must keep them busy at all times.
Breed: Cane Corso
Origin Story: The Cane Corso descended from the canis pugnax, the dogs that were used by the Romans in warfare. It was nearly extinct, but enthusiasts of the breed were able to recover it in the 1970s.
Fun Fact: An Italian native, the Cane Corso has been featured in many paintings throughout Italy's history.
Breed: Finnish Lapphund
Origin Story: Finnish Lapphunds were known to have helped dogs of a tribe of semi-nomadic people in Lapland (the northern region of Finland, Sweden and Russia) called the Sami.The dogs evolved from hunters into herding dogs that helped maintain reindeer.
Fun Fact: When they are working, Finnish Lapphunds can be noisy!
Breed: Entlebucher Mountain Dog
Origin Story: Entlebuchers were historically used to move cows from pastures in the Swiss Alps. The breed originated from Entlebuch Valley, which is a district of the Cantons Lucerne and Berne.
Fun Fact: Although large in size, the Entlebucher is a happy breed that craves attention from people.
Breed: Boykin Spaniel
Origin Story: In the early 1900s, a dog was found near a church in Spartanburg, South Carolina. A churchgoer named Mr. Alexander L. White took the dog home that day. He later sent the dog to his hunting partner, Mr. L. Whitaker Boykin.
Fun Fact: The Boykin is the state dog of South Carolina.
Next: Meet the Portuguese Water Dog!
Breed: Redbone Coonhound
Origin Story: Colonial settlers from Scotland and Ireland brought red hounds with them to the United States, which became the ancestors of the Redbone.
Fun Fact: Redbones can sometimes have a small amount of white on their chest or feet. This comes from their Irish hound background.